Ooh I actually have time to write a review!
Okay so I loved the Help. Definitely recommend it as a solid historical fiction piece as well as just a plain ole page turner.
What I loved:
All characters. My favorite is Mr. Johnny. And Minny.
The slow paradigm shift of Miss Skeeter.
The juxtaposition of women passing off nursing a baby, one of the most intimate bonding experiences of motherhood, to a person that is not allowed to use the facilitees.
What I hated:
The reality of it. That this kind of thing actually happened and the attitude that still occurs among some wealthy white folk in the south.
What I am sad about:
Miss Skeeter's lonely existence and the lack of satisfaction knowing that her tall, frizzy-headed ways didn't land her no man when she was simply delightful.
I was also embarrassed to tell people about the book because everytime I recommended the Help people thought it was like the Secret. Some kind of self-help book.
An anecdote: My cousin married a guy who is half Austrian, half Rhodesian. For those ignorant folk, Rhodesia is now Zimbabwe. Anywho, my cousin is a super lib who has worked for Homeless Shelters, has a Master's Degree in Women's Studies, and has worked to insure death row inmates their due process, all of which she has accomplished by living in San Francisco. So one day her MIL says to her "that food is so disgusting I wouldn't feed it to my servant." My cuz got all bent out of shape because the servants in Africa get treated like #*$% and as the super liberator that she is, it hurt her being. This book made me feel the indignation of my cuz, something no book has every done before.
Thanks Tiff for putting this all out on the table and reminding us of the great strides we have made in civil liberties over the years. Also, great story.